If your NYC investment property contains three or more units — or is a one to two family house in which neither you nor an immediate family member lives — then it is essential to register your building every year with the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD).
On top of annual registration, all NYC landlords of multi-dwelling properties must post specific regulatory signage. These types of notifications, also known as HPD Signs, are a must if you want to comply with the city’s Housing Maintenance Code and avoid big fines.
In this blog, we’ll break down the main types of signs that every multiple unit property owner or manager must post. These signs not only ensure a safe and well-maintained building but also help to clearly outline your own responsibilities, as well as your tenants’. At the bottom of the page, we’ll also list some additional HPD signs which may or may not apply to you.
HPD Signs That Are Mandatory in NYC
Gas Leak Notice: You are required to inform your renters which steps need to be taken when a gas leak is suspected. The notice must be delivered to each tenant — along with either their copy of the lease or their lease renewal from — as well as posted in a common area of the building. This notice can now also be combined with a Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Notice into a single sign.
Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors Notice: If you’re not using a combined gas leak/ smoke and carbon monoxide detector sign, then you must post a separate notice. Much like all HPD signs, this notice must be in a form approved by HPD (including things like the size, letter height, material, etc.). It will warn tenants that smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in use throughout the building.
Fire Safety Notices: Owners of buildings with three or more apartments need to post a Fire Safety Sign — in addition to an Emergency Preparedness Notice in lobbies, front halls or vestibules — on the inside of all unit doors, as well as in a conspicuous place inside the building. It informs residents what to do in case of a fire or other hazardous events. There are two main types of fire safety notices, depending on whether the building is made of combustible (aka non-fire proof) or fire proof (aka non-combustible) materials.
A Combustible, Non-Fireproof Building Fire Safety Notice
A non-combustible or fireproof Building
Framed Certificate of Inspection: You’ll also need to provide a durable frame along with a glass enclosure for your 6″ x 9″ inspection visit card. It is important that this certificate is posted at eye level, which the city lists as being between 48″ and 62″ from the floor. It must also be posted near the mailboxes or an accessible place in the vestibules or front hallways of your buildings.
Serial Number Signage: A sign containing the identifying serial number assigned to the building by HPD should also be posted in the building’s front entrance hall. The sign should also include the building’s street address, as well as contact information for the superintendent, janitor, or housekeeper of the building.
Janitor Name/ Address: The name of the superintendent or janitor, along with their address, telephone number and apartment number, must be posted somewhere near the entrance of the building.
Garbage Collection Sign: If there is no 24-hour garbage chute service, you have to post the days/times and proper methods of trash disposal in the building lobby. This should also include instructions for recycling. The sign should be enclosed in either plastic or a glass-paned frame in order to prevent damage.
Boiler Room Sign: In case of mechanical failure or another emergency, you have to post the name and location of the person who has the boiler room keys. One sign should be conspicuously posted in the lobby and another one should be hung on the boiler room door.
Floor Number: Every floor number of your building needs to be clearly posted on each floor.
Street Number: Your building address needs to be clearly readable from the sidewalk.
Housing Information Guide Notice: A notice regarding the availability of the Housing Information Guide, otherwise known as the “ABCs of Housing” needs to be posted in a conspicuous place which is visible from the area of the building where mail is delivered. Failure to do so can quickly rack up thousands in fines.
Other Important HPD Notices
The following notice will apply based on the type of building, the presence of certain kinds of quality of life issues, as well as before major construction and/or interruption of services due to major work:
Safe Construction Bill of Rights: When applying for a construction permit or notifying the city of emergency work, landlords must either distribute or post a Safe Construction Bill of Rights Notice for all tenants to read. This sign is not necessary for routine maintenance or other minor work. The notice must be posted in English, as well as made available in Spanish, Arabic, Haitian Creole, Chinese, Korean and Russian if necessary.
Notice of Interruption of Services: Before making repairs or any work that will cause an interruption in utilities for more than two hours, you have to post a Notice of Interruption of Services. According to the city, this notice must be publicly posted at least 24 hours before the interruption of “heat, hot water, cold water, gas, or electricity service” is expected to begin and remain posted until the service interruption ends. The notice must be posted in English and in Spanish, as well as updated as conditions change.
Bedbug Annual Filing Report: Beginning in 2017, apartment building owners are now required to file annual bedbug infestation and treatment reports with HPD. This document lists the history of bedbugs in the building. A copy has to be made available to residents, either by posting it in a prominent location or distributing one to each tenant when they sign a new lease or lease renewal.
Maximum Occupancy of Rooms Sign: Hotels and certain kinds of single room occupancy buildings are required to have a sign indicating the maximum occupancy posted inside each unit or room.
Questions? Just Let Us Know
These signs are the most necessary types to post in different types of residential NYC buildings. For more information on purchasing the latest HPD regulatory signage — including complete all-in-one packages and Covid-19 Signs — for your property, please check out our wide selection of HPD Signs or contact us for questions about specific settings.